T.E.R:R.A.I.N - Taranaki Educational Resource: Research, Analysis and Information Network


Leycesteria formosa (Himalayan Honeysuckle)

Kingdom: Plantae
(unranked): Angiosperms
(unranked): Eudicots
(unranked): Asterids
Order: Dipsacales 
Family: Caprifoliaceae 
Genus: Leycesteria
Species: L. formosa
Binomial name: Leycesteria formosa
Common name: Himalayan honeysuckle, Flowering nutmeg, Himalayan nutmeg

Himalayan honeysuckle (Leycesteria formosa)is a  many-stemmed, deciduous, perennial shrub  growing up to 3 metres high. It has round, straight stems hairless which are hollow.  The leaves are pointed and are heart-shaped , broad, opposite, and under 14cm long, they may be lobed. It has white, funnel-shaped flowers (Dec-May) surrounded by larger, drooping, reddish-purple bracts. It develops roundish, deep brown-purple fleshy berries with a staining juice.
It grows in areas of open forest,  for instance where there has been a landslide, quickly replacing native species. It can penetrate untouched forest by colonising the gaps where natural light filters through. Honeysuckle native to the Himalaya and southwestern China and was first introduced to New Zealand as an ornamental garden plant in 1878.
It habitats stream margins, roadsides, forest margins, disturbed forest, scrubland, gullies and is more common in wetter western areas.  It abundant seeds dispersed by birds & water. Its impacts on environment by forming dense thickets that displace native species. Penetrate into untouched forest via natural light gaps.

On the shores of Lake Kaniere, estcoast, South Island.




Flower buds.






   




 

Juvenile leaves.


A adult leaf.